Common polyamory myths

Okay, so I know this has been done many times before. But for the sake of making sure my blog has all the important resources in one place (and because thinking of unique new ideas for posts every single day is sometimes a challenge), I’ve done my own version of a ‘poly-myths busted’ article. I’ve focused on the 5 myths that I feel are most important to set the record straight on. As with all my articles, I will drawing on my own experiences and including my personal opinions, so you don’t have to agree with my answers ;)

1. It’s a phase/you just haven’t found The One yet

As you’ve already read in my article about “The One, there seems to be this notion floating around in Western society that there is one person out there made just for you, who can fulfill your every need. People seem to think that if you are dating more than one person, it can only mean you are unfulfilled by any single relationship and need to fill a void with lots of partners. That is, until you find That One Special person and you realise you don’t need anyone else, thus growing out of your little ‘poly’ phase. Being polyamorus, I learned that because everyone is different, there are many different ways a person can fulfill you. Both of my partners are The One for me; that is to say, I could live a happy monogamous life with either one and still be fulfilled. I just choose to be with both because having two Ones at the same time is a wonderful experience.

2. You just can’t commit to one person/it’s a fancy word for cheating6

On the contrary, polyamory requires two, three or more times the commitment than monogamy, depending on how many partners you have. I had been in a completely committed relationship with Ash for 4 years before Aidan came along, so it wasn’t like we were unhappy with each other and needed to see other people to keep ourselves satisfied. As for cheating, many people seem to think it’s a simple matter of sleeping with someone else while you’re already in a relationship. Cheating is about breaking specific rules or boundaries that you and your partner have set in place to make sure both of you are comfortable. Me having another partner does not make Ash feel uncomfortable, nor is it a secret I hide from him. Thus, it is not cheating.

3. Your partner is only letting you because they’re afraid you’ll leave otherwise

This is possibly the myth that gripes me the most, because everyone assumes it of me. As I mentioned above, Ash and I were already in an established relationship before I started dating Aidan. So a lot of people in our families just assumed that I was no longer satisfied with Ash, and Ash reluctantly let me sleep around for fear that him restricting me would mean me leaving him. I can see why it’s easy to think that, but it is just simply not true. Not only are Ash and I just as happy (if not more happy) with each other since Aidan joined our family, but Ash gained a best friend out of the new relationship. And of course, he wants me to be happy and he can see that Aidan makes me happy. So in short, Ash is ‘letting’ me date Aidan because it is the best thing for all three of us.

4. Love is finite

What people are really trying to say when they mention this is that time and energy are finite. Yes, it’s true that the more partners you have, the less time and effort you can put into each individual relationship. But that absolutely does not mean you love them any less. It’s hard to explain if you haven’t been in a polyamorus relationship yourself, but in my own experience I’ve found that the amount of love I have grows with each person I am intimate with.

5. Polyamory will fix your existing relationship problems

In a last ditch effort to save a failing relationship, many couples will decide to ‘see other people’ so that they can seek the fulfillment they are not getting in their existing one. And this is not an uncommon scenario, either. Because adding more people to an already shaky relationship is a recipe for disaster, many people have bad associations with relationships involving more than two. And that gets applied to polyamory all the time. Polyamory works for us because Ash and I were already committed and happy when I became involved with Aidan. Aidan was not a ‘band-aid’ to patch up problems in me and Ash’s relationship.

So as proven by us and hundreds of thousands of other non-monogamists worldwide, polyamory is absolutely a happy, healthy way of life, assuming you got into it for the right reasons.

‘Till next time!

-Emma

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Thoughts on “The One”

I often tell my partners, “you’re one of the ones for me”.

I grew up in a Christian, monogamous, white, middle-class family. As such, I went through life believing that the end goal was the find The One, buy a house with a white-picket fence and have 2.5 children. Now don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with wanting that (in fact it’s still what I want, only with two husbands instead of one). But the idea of finding The One, someone who is perfect for you in every way and can fulfill your every need, is a concept that I’ve questioned since entering into the world of polyamory.

In fact, I’ve questioned it since before then, just not consciously. In my teens, I went to see Australian/English comedian and singer Tim Minchin at a live show. He often explores issues which are serious in nature, but presents them in a comical way (for example, his answer to the conflict between Jews and Muslims is for them to bond over the mutual abstaining of pork).

And while it’s not one of his best or funniest songs, “If I Didn’t Have You” really drives home the idea of The One being pretty ridiculous.

At the time I went to see Minchin, I had being going out with Ash maybe 2 or 3 years, and I was starting to believe he really was The One. So this idea of there being many other possible partners for me who could make me equally happy kind of stewed in my subconscious for a while.

Fast-forward to when I became involved with Aidan. I always knew it was possible to love two people at the same time, but actually experiencing it was something else entirely. That was when I realised, I loved Aidan just as much as Ashley. And, had I met him first, he probably would have made me equally happy in our first few years of monogamy. So in retrospect, Mr. Minchin’s words make a lot of sense to me.

In conclusion, I guess you could say that people can find The One. It’s just that there might be Two Ones or even Three, Four or More Ones for you out there.